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History Of Indian Mathematics

1.2 Algebra

The first ever use of letters for numbers is found in Indian scripts which is considered to be the origin of Algebra similar to basic arithmetic. Not only this, system of writing the equations was considered to be the finest one in the world. Indian scholars developed methods of solving linear equations with one, two and three variables. The methods for solving quadratic and cubic equations were also perfected in addition to methods for solving all types of simultaneous equations. Indians scholars were specialist in Kuttaka i.e. solving simple and simultaneous first degree indeterminate equations in two and three variables. Scholars all over the world described the ‘Cakravala’ method for solving the second degree indeterminate equations as ‘absolute climax of old Indian mathematics and so of all oriental mathematics’. Indian scholars also developed binomial and multinomial expansions with the help of different Prastaras and Merus Pascal triangle like structures. These and many other contributions in the field of Algebra are equally significant but many times ignored as compared to those in Arithmetic.